When you talk to someone who has served in the military, they might share stories of bravery and camaraderie. But often, they also carry unseen burdens.
Many soldiers, even after leaving the battlefield, live with deep emotional scars. Some return with physical injuries too, ranging from minor wounds to life-altering disabilities.
Simon Brown was shot in the face by a sniper in Iraq whilst rescuing six people.
The REME soldier was blinded in one eye and left with just 20% vision in the other.
— Blesma (@Blesma) March 4, 2023
One such hero is Simon Brown, a former corporal in the British military. In 2006, during his third deployment in Iraq, Simon faced a life-changing moment. Leading a mission to rescue six stranded soldiers, he was shot in the face by a sniper. This incident nearly claimed his life and left him with serious injuries.
Simon, a member of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, spent 17 days in a coma. When he awoke, he discovered he had lost his left eye and most of the vision in his right. Additionally, he suffered damage to his nose, drastically changing his appearance. This was a turning point in his life, filled with challenges and adjustments.
Despite these hardships, Simon showed remarkable resilience. He underwent numerous surgeries to reconstruct his face. But beyond his personal recovery, Simon chose to transform his painful experiences into lessons of strength and courage. He began speaking at schools and events, sharing his story to educate others and support fellow veterans who might be struggling with their own traumas.
This is Simon Brown. Simon was a corporal in the Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers in Iraq. On a rescue mission, where he helped rescue six wounded soldiers, he was tragically hit by sniper fire. This bullet destroyed much of his face. @BlindVeterans helped him recover ❤ pic.twitter.com/f1rSNZ3RqF
— BulldogUK Network (@BulldogUK2) May 15, 2019
Simon’s journey led to an extraordinary encounter with Temperance Pattison, a young girl with a deep interest in war heroes and their stories. Their meeting was part of the “Facing It Together” campaign by Help for Heroes. Simon, understandably, had concerns about how Temperance would react to his scars. However, their interaction turned out to be an inspiring and heartwarming exchange.
The world got to witness this special moment between Simon and Temperance. Their conversation, captured in a video, showcased a powerful and emotional connection that transcended age and experience. It’s a touching reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the power of understanding and empathy.
This story, beyond its emotional impact, serves as an important reminder of the sacrifices made by those in the military and the enduring challenges they face even after their service ends. Simon’s bravery and positivity, along with Temperance’s open-heartedness, offer a beacon of hope and inspiration to us all.